Drug Allergy

Many patients experience adverse reactions to medications. Only a small percent of these reactions, however, are true allergic reactions. An allergic reaction means the patient’s immune system is programmed to recognize a certain medication and produce a specific reaction whenever it encounters that drug.

The most potentially severe allergic reaction to a drug is anaphylaxis. This happens when the patient, unknowingly, has a large amount of an allergy protein (called IgE antibody) in his or her body specific for a drug, such as penicillin.

Learn More About Penicillin Allergy

Video courtesy of the American College of Asthma, Allergy, & Immunology (ACAAI)

Recommended reading:

  • Drug allergy overview – An in-depth, “plain-english” discussion on drug allergy by the American College of Allergy, Asthma, and Immunology (ACAAI).
  • Tips to Remember – Important tips to remember regarding drug allergies, by the American Academy of Allergy, Asthma, and Immunology (AAAAI).
  • MedicAlert – MedicAlert serves to relay vital medical information about you when you need it most, including drug allergies.
  • “Allergy TV” by MedScape – Watch useful allergy videos online.